Kingman hosts Andy Devine Days Rodeo and Best of the West on 66 Festival in September
The people of Kingman received so much positive feedback from the International Route 66 Festival they hosted in 2014, that event organizers are carrying the momentum forward with the first annual Best of the West on 66 Festival. Activities this year are coordinated to combine with the 31st Annual Andy Devine Days PRCA Rodeo, to celebrate nearly a century of rodeo and car culture.
As a western ranching town, rodeos were held in the Kingman area as early as the 1880’s, but Kingman’s first organized rodeo was hosted in 1919. In 1920, purses totaled nearly $4,000 ($50,000 in today’s dollars).
In the 1930’s, 40’s and 50’s, the rodeo was called the Dig-‘N-Dogie Days and was a nationally recognized celebration of ranching and mining. Dig-‘N-Dogie Days phased out as area mines closed down. Kingman rodeos at that time were encircled by a grandstand of automobiles for an instant arena.
A group of businessmen named the Kingsmen planned the first Andy Devine Days Rodeo in 1985 to “restore some of the spirit of Kingman’s Dig-‘N-Dogie Days”. Andy Devine Days is a PRCA Turquoise Circuit Rodeo event. It takes place the final qualifying weekend for cowboys to earn points for the NFR (National Finals Rodeo) in Las Vegas. Every year it draws serious bronc and bull riders.
For the first time, not only does Andy Devine Days coincide with the Best of the West on Route 66 Festival, but the Saturday performance will be in the cool evening with an old fashioned barn dance to follow.
For more information about these events, visit the Kingman Visitor Center at www.gokingman.com or call 866-427-7866.